Unrestrained extraction of natural resources and relentless expansion of agriculture are responsible for the current environmental crisis, marked by insect collapse and wildlife loss. But the good news is that with satellite and computational technology, it is now possible to keep tabs on legal and illegal landscape changes.
Satellite-based cameras daily capture data and images of the Earth that can be analyzed with an inexpensive laptop computer. The human footprint can be monitored at the continental level over long periods of time. Furthermore, in almost real-time, these images can be placed online via web map services, making possible new levels of transparency and accountability in such areas as oil palm plantation expansion.
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